Executive Summary. Class action attorneys recently filed a first-of-its-kind class action against Edison Home Health Care (“Edison”) and Preferred Home Care of New York (“Preferred”) alleging that the home care agencies used a “captive” insurance company to cheat their home care workers out of millions of Wage Parity Act (“WPA”) dollars. This is the first lawsuit targeting use of captive insurance companies to provide health benefits and was brought under ERISA, the federal statute governing employee benefit plans, as well as the WPA. The suit claims that the agencies used a captive insurer to avoid paying their Medicaid funded home care workers the full $4.09 WPA package of additional wages and benefits (“WPA Package”) and, instead, returned WPA-credited benefit dollars to the agencies and their owners. No prior lawsuit has targeted use of captive insurance companies in this way, and the progress of this lawsuit will be closely watched.
Articles Discussing The Workplace In The Health Care Industry.
What should (or can) you do if a locally recognized “Best Physician” throws a scalpel in the direction of a nurse during surgery? What are a CMO and CNO’s obligations to investigate when he/she learns there is a “situation” between a doctor and a nurse? How do you balance patient safety and compliance with anti-discrimination laws when the medical staff revokes an impaired physician’s privileges?
In the wake of a recent uptick in workplace violence based lawsuits against home care and assisted living providers, lawmakers introduced a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives on November 16th that would require health care and social services providers to write and implement workplace violence prevention plans. If signed into law, H.R. 7141—the Workplace Violence Prevention in Health Care and Social Services Act—would compel OSHA to create and enforce workplace safety standards pertaining to workplace violence.
October 2018 marks the 15th annual National Cyber Security Awareness Month. In honor of this occasion, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) have jointly launched an updated HIPAA Security Risk Assessment (SRA) Tool to help covered entities and business associates comply with the HIPAA Security Rule. But remember, the HIPAA Security Rule does not require a “one-size-fits-all” approach to security.
Disruptive physicians are staple characters on television shows about the medical field. Some of the most recent T.V. doctors of this vein that come to mind are Dr. Gregory House of House and Dr. Perry Cox of Scrubs. While Dr. House and Dr. Cox present entertaining caricatures of disruptive physician behavior (“DPB”), in “real life” DPB has long presented many significant workplace challenges for health care institutions.
Rheumatologist Ephraim Engleman practiced medicine until he died at age 104 in 2015. Although Dr. Engleman’s story is atypical, as our colleagues who attended the American Health Lawyers Association’s 2018 Physicians and Hospitals Law Institute reported, and the Association of American Medicine Medical College’s November 2017 State Physician Workforce Data Report confirms, an increasing number of physicians are choosing to work past traditional retirement age. Today, nearly one-third of all physicians in the United States are over the age of 60.
As #MeToo and #TimesUp initiatives sweep the nation, the healthcare industry should pay attention.
The American Health Lawyers Association’s 2018 Physicians and Hospitals Law Institute in New Orleans focused on the legal challenges faced by physicians and hospitals. Here are the Jackson Lewis Healthcare Industry Team’s “Top 7” takeaways from the attorneys who attended the conference:
Skilled nursing facilities participating in the Medicare program and nursing facilities in the Medicaid program are prohibited from including a mandatory pre-dispute arbitration clause in their contracts with individuals seeking admission to long-term care (LTC) facilities under a final rule from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
A respiratory therapist can proceed with her civil rights claims because questions remain about whether her hospital employer intended to honor a patient’s request that he not be treated by black employees, a federal court has ruled. Caprice McCrary v. Oakwood Healthcare, Inc., C.A. No. 14-14053 (E.D. Mich. Mar. 16, 2016).
A federal court in Ohio has dismissed Family and Medical Leave Act and disability discrimination claims filed by a nurse who was caught sleeping while on duty and fired. Lasher v. Medina Hosp., et al., C.A. No. 1:15CV00005 (N.D. Ohio Feb. 5, 2016). The court found the hospital had a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason for terminating her employment, which she could not establish was pretextual, and that she failed to notify her employer that she needed FMLA leave for the time she was sleeping on duty.
The U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) has been notifying hospitals and medical providers by letter that their advertisements placed through the Centralized Application Service for Podiatric Residencies (“CASPR”) for podiatric residency positions may be in violation of specific provisions of the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. § 1324b.